It goes without saying, though, that this will mean a lot of parental involvement – the highlight of summer holidays cannot be a vacation planned by a tour operator or holiday planner!
I recall our school’s experience with excursions – we always try to combine the fun quotient with a learning objective such as understanding a different culture or a way of life. Parents could adopt this approach too.
What should parents be wary about, when it comes to summer holidays?
Though children quickly regain their rhythm when school restarts, I would suggest parents maintain a semblance of order and schedules during holidays too. Completely unscheduled holidays do leave their mark on the child – even two weeks of waking up at 10 am is unacceptable, according to me.
While school schedules are about doing ‘compulsory’ things, holidays should be about optional’ things. Children should also be given free range to explore and deepen certain areas of interest – specialised sports camps, swimming camps or theatre workshops enable children to immerse themselves in something that they love.
Again, while holidays are about freedom to pursue the individual’s interest, children should not be left in isolation. Parents should ensure that they get enough social interaction, and involve them in group activities, whenever possible.
Some hints for families with working parents?
Do set aside weekends for exploration and travel. Make time for the children and organise your work schedules suitably in the summer break. Do take an active role in the child’s reading habits – for younger children, reading aloud is the best way to bond and get quality time together. With older children, discuss books that you read over dinner,and articles in the newspaper during breakfast time.